I’m luckier than many who’ve suffered physically, emotionally and financially from COVID19, and haven’t minded the extended lock-down in Melbourne. As well as having a bit more time for polymer clay and other crafts, I’ve had regular zoom ‘craft catchups’ with friends. One technique I share with people who are new to polymer clay is the kaleidoscope cane. You can get impressive results using just a few elements, and it’s a great way to use up canes you have left over. Even canes you don’t like can be beautiful when combined with others and repeated in this way.
I have described how to make a simple flower cane here. Here is a video of the process, including making beads. This bangle was worn by one of the actors in Jane Cafarella’s play about surrogacy – “e-baby” which was performed at Chapel off Chapel (Melbourne, Australia) in March 2015.
Check this link for an amazing (very short) video of the building of a Marilyn Monroe cane by Adina Pastelina.
My daughter has some favorite green shoes, which she wants to wear with greys and neutrals – she clearly needed a necklace to tie in the shoes.
I added some ground cumin and coarsely ground black pepper to the white polymer clay, to add a bit of interest. I mixed a color to match the shoes (kato clay: 2 yellow, 1 turquoise and a pinch of red). I created a skinner blend then made beads from different parts of the blend. For the shape, I rolled lentil beads, and once I had the lentil shape, simply squashed them with the top plate.
Having made a number of polymer clay clocks, I was keen to see if I could make one small and light enough to wear as a pin or pendant. I made the basic shape from Sculpey Light and cut out the centre to hold the watch, then applied black Kato, and some Fimo Classic canes. (I changed from Fimo to Sculpey when my supplier stopped stocking Fimo Classic after the change in formula, but I have a few canes left which are still usable once I work them a bit.)
I drilled a hole and threaded a head pin through the side of the piece, then through the small hole in the lug, holding the watch but allowing it to hinge out. Two pin backs attach to clothing or to the jump rings beside the necklace clasp.
I initially embedded the pin backs in so far they were too short, and I had to take them out and redo them. However, next time I would do them a little shorter.
I did two workshops at CFCF 2012 with Lindly Haunani. As is often the case, the biggest lesson for me had nothing to do with the actual workshop projects.
I spend lots of time developing a color theme, and then producing most of my work using that theme. I love “Color Inspirations” by Lindly and Maggie Maggio, and I used some of the steps in the book to create the color theme I usually use. So, walking into Lindly’s classes and being presented with 5 blocks of (donated) Premo filled me with anxiety. Black, white and 3 stark prime colors – something like this and no time to mix better ones. There was only one thing to do – Continue reading
I was lucky enough to be able to attend Cabin Fever Clay Festival last month in Laurel, Maryland, as part of a holiday to the US. After 20 years of teaching myself – initially from books, and later the web – it was very exciting to be in these workshops, to actually see the wonderful tutors in action – many of whom I have “known” for years through my collection of polymer clay books.
It was also great to be part of a wonderful, friendly group of people who were all excited about polymer clay!
The workshops have inspired me (at least for now!) to spend more time working with polymer clay – and to join the many people who share their polymer work, and start a blog. I’m not sure how I will go with either. I did consider calling my blog “polymer clay yearly” (in contrast to Cynthia Tinapple’s daily posts) but at this stage I’m a little more optimistic than that!